The waste from electronics have exceeded 50 million tonnes in 2019, an increase of 20% over five years, warned on Thursday the united nations.
Only 17% of the 53 million tons of waste from consumer electronics – phones, computers, household appliances or automobile – have been recycled, according to the annual report of the united nations on the subject. The rest, for an amount estimated at approximately € 50 billion, is thrown away.
These waste non-recycled contain gold, silver, copper, platinum and ” rare earths “, the minerals that must therefore be (over)exploited to produce new devices. They also contain toxic substances hazardous to human health, warns the report.
The planned obsolescence and the low recycling rates aggravate this problem, the main one currently in the field of waste, according to the UN.
It is Asia that has generated the most electronic waste, with 24.9 million tonnes, followed by the Americas (13,1 Mt) and Europe (12 Mt, but the highest rate per capita), Africa and Oceania are far behind with respectively 2.9 Mt and 0.7 Mt.
“It is necessary to urgently increase efforts to production, consumption and disposal more sustainable electrical and electronic equipment,” noted David Malone, under-secretary-general and rector of United Nations university.
“The amount of electronic waste has increased three times faster than the human population and 13% more than the global GDP in the last five years “, underlines on its side Antonis Mavropoulos, president of the international Association of solid waste, pointing to an ” increase, which created strong pressures in terms of the environment and health “